The intention of this thesis is to create an interactive, multi-media educational module. The subject is the form and function of the human kidney. This module is intended as an introductory overview to the physical description of the kidney, its tissues, functions, and its relationships with other major organs within the human body. The end product could be conceived of as a chapter in an encyclopedia set of similar such chapters. Target audiences could be, but are not limited to, secondary education and college undergraduate health science students, doctors' patients, family of patients, and /or caregivers of individuals with kidney related health issues. This program is intended for use in the context of an interactive educational computer station, a web-based educational site, for distance learning in a virtual classroom setting and as a CD /ROM that could be purchased outright or used as reference material from a public library. The overarching design of the program is developed around four major premises. The first of these is the interactivity design. The interactive model is designed for return usage and accommodates familiarization with the program on the part of the user. First time usage navigation is prompted by the software. However, usage is fully interactive and allows for extensive self-direction by repeat users. The intention is to give the viewer maximum freedom of aided visual exploration. The second premise is the division of the intended subject matter into manageable domains. The subjects of the human kidney covered in the program include general orientation within the body, gross anatomy, internal structures, histology and function. A third organizational factor in the development of this program involves visual aesthetics and stylistic concerns. The goal was not to simplify, but rather to clarify. My intention was to concentrate on the use of still, detailed, representational, volumetric renderings of structure and form. I sought to deliberately edit the visual subject matter in the virtual environment in such a way as to promote focus. Use was made of three-dimensional graphic modeling programs to emphasize structural relationships. Cross-sectional imagery from the Virtual Human project of the National Library of Medicine is used as a graphic corollary to my own illustrations to invite greater realism in the viewer's experience of the subject. A final concern in the development of this program is the choice of medium. The project is conceived of as a chance to make in-depth exploration into the use of electronic art mediums. The reality of my own experience is that the development of this program has drawn from, and touched upon, virtually every aspect of my education within the Master of Fine Arts in Medical Illustration program at Rochester Institute of Technology. For me, this represents the most successful aspect of my endeavor within the program.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Interactive multimedia--Design; Kidneys--Interactive multimedia

Publication Date


Document Type


Department, Program, or Center

School of Art (CIAS)


Perkins, Jim

Advisor/Committee Member

Doolittle, Richard

Advisor/Committee Member

Lightfoot, Thomas


Note: imported from RIT’s Digital Media Library running on DSpace to RIT Scholar Works. Physical copy available through RIT's The Wallace Library at: QA76.9.I58 D446 2000


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